The 5 C’s of Social Media Marketing
Know what you want to get out of your social media strategy before you click that ‘post’ button. Set goals, targets, define your target audience and then make a plan about how you intend to reach them.
Be sure you have the technology and the time to respond to any queries, comments or suggestions that may flood in after you’ve hurled yourself onto the social media stage. If you blunder in the beginning, you may unwittingly create the wrong impression of yourself. Do yourself a favor and be ready because, when it comes to social media marketing, the following old adage is true: “If you fail to prepare, prepare to fail.”
You need to be in it for the long haul. Social media is not for dabblers. People value their connections on social media platforms, and if you are non-responsive to interactions and messages, or if you reply to comments, tweets or messages weeks after they’re sent, you’ll do more harm than good to your business. Don’t be a social media ghost.
If you feel like you might not have the time to engage with your followers, make a schedule and stick to it. Maybe you can commit to being online for fifteen minute intervals each day: in the morning, the afternoon and the evening. By breaking your schedule down into manageable chunks, you gain control and confidence.
Community is the lifeblood of social media. And bigger isn’t necessarily better. You don’t want to build as many connections as you possibly can; you want to build meaningful connections. There’s no point chasing people who aren’t into what you do. Be strategic. Write guest posts for people within your industry and make yourself known. Be sure to get a by-line with links to your social media pages. The most valuable followers are those who want to know about what you do.
Social media marketing, at its core, is about adding value way before you make a sale. If you’re churning out one sales pitch after another, peppered indiscriminately with self-promotional advertisements and news about your events, you will lose followers. They’ll get bored – it’s that simple.
Your content is your way to help your followers by making their lives easier. Your blog, for example, is not meant to be a thinly veiled soapbox from where you shout your own message. Think about what your followers are interested in, what sort of information would serve them best and then find a way to give it to them.
Do that and you are sure to see your loyalty base grow and grow.
You need to stay on top of breaking trends in your industry if you want to keep your finger on the pulse of your community, and understand what makes it tick. What’s everyone talking about? Has Sony just launched a top-of-the-range camera that will change the world of photography as we know it? What will it mean for you and other photographers? Has Google’s latest algorithm update changed how SEO marketers do business? What will that mean?
There is always a buzz on social media platforms when big news breaks and you want to be part of it.
The era of citizen journalism is here. It is not strange for news to break over social media channels while reporters scramble at their desks gathering sources. If you earn a reputation for always being on top of news as it breaks in your industry, you will become a go-to source within your industry, which will earn you popularity and loyalty.
I’d love for you to join me on a high-seas publishing adventure this January. This will be a week-long cruise designed to maximize your time for all things social media, marketing, and publishing. I invite you to check out www.publishingatsea.com for further details.